I checked System Monitor to see if the frequency of my CPU increases without doing anything and saw that xorg is always using 10-40% of the CPU even if it's not doing much of anything on the desktop or simply surfing the Internet. Is this normal? If not, how can I fix it?

I have:

  • a Macbook white 4,1
  • Core2 Duo running at 2.10 GHz
  • GPU Intel GMA X3100
  • 4GB of RAM
  • Ubuntu 11.04

I am running Unity and I do not have many effects enabled. I have only activated Compiz animations, scale, desktop, some shadows...

  • A working solution is described here - I hope it helps you as much as it helped me! Jun 23, 2015 at 21:34

3 Answers 3


Actually, the System Monitor itself is a rather graphics intensive application, which makes your claim of not doing anything slightly odd. Try running 'top' instead, but ultimately, xorg will probably use less cpu if compiz is off.

  • +1 - System Monitor uses a fairly large amount of resources and will likely skew your results. Jul 27, 2011 at 19:26
  • 3
    No matter how intensive System Monitor is, having xorg taking up 10-40% of the cpu is not normal at all. My - although more powerful by a rather noticeable difference - system has never seen xorg use more than 2-3%. Right now, for example, Xorg sits between 0 and 1 %.
    – Chriskin
    Jul 27, 2011 at 20:06

40% doesn't seem to be normal. However, how you are measuring this? Are you using top command? Can you also check the output of vmstat command and see how much cpu utilization?


I believe you are experiencing this bug:


It is the most annoying thing in Precise and everyone is waiting for a fix...

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